Deal reached on paid sick leave bill

Council Speaker Christine Quinn announces the legislation Friday at City Hall. Credit: William Alatriste
Council Speaker Christine Quinn announces the legislation Friday at City Hall. Credit: William Alatriste

Thousands of companies in New York City will soon be required to give their employees paid sick leave.

Under a deal announced by Council Speaker Christine Quinn’s office Thursday evening, companies with 20 or more employees will be required to offer five paid sick days beginning April 1, 2014. On Oct. 1, 2015, it will expand to include companies with 15 or more workers. 

“We have a good, strong and sensible piece of legislation that recognizes the needs of everyday New Yorkers and the realities that our struggling small businesses face,” Quinn said in a statement.

She said the 2014 start date gives businesses extra time to recover before absorbing the extra costs.

The bill also ensures the requirement will only go into effect if the economy continues to improve, according to Quinn’s office.

Enforcement will be complaint driven, according to the speaker’s office, and handled by the Department of Consumer Affairs. The maximum fine will be $2,500.

Quinn had blocked a vote on the paid sick leave bill for three years, arguing that it would hurt the city’s economy. She drew criticism from her fellow mayoral contenders, her colleagues in the City Council and activists, including feminist Gloria Steinem.

Under the bill, companies that have fewer than 15 employees will be forced to offer unpaid days off to sick workers. Companies will be legally forbidden from firing employees for taking sick time off, paid or unpaid.

Advocates had originally wanted a bill that would apply to companies with five or more employees. Despite the compromises made, the deal is a victory for labor unions and liberal activists who have long rallied for it. They say the legislation will affect one million workers who until now could not take time off out of fear that they would lose pay or their job.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg vowed Friday he will veto the bill.

“It is crucial that we continue doing everything we can to allow businesses to grow,” he said. “While this compromise version of the bill is better than previous iterations, it will still hurt small businesses and stifle job creation.”

There is expected to be enough votes in the City Council to override the veto.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

NYPD looking for man they say assaulted elderly…

      The New York City Police Department is asking for the public's assistance in locating a Hispanic male 20's wanted in connection with…

Local

Three arrested after allegedly assaulting off-duty officer in…

Three men were arrested early Saturday morning after allegedly assaulting an off-duty officer at a Bronx bodega, and the NYPD is asking for the public's…

Local

Healthcare union creates vibrant West Indian Day Parade…

Volunteers worked almost around the clock through the weekend, putting the flashy finishing touches on hundreds of costume pieces 1199SEIU members will wear while marching…

National

Top 10 most hipster college campuses

Hipsters are everywhere these days. You can't walk down the anywhere anymore without seeing a pair of skinny jeans on a handlebar mustachioed 20-something, a…

Arts

Theater: Discouraging 'Poor Behavior'

Theresa Rebeck's latest off-Broadway play, about two couples sparring on a weekend getaway, repeats a few mistakes of her past.

Gossip

Chef Todd English arrested for DWI in the…

Celebrity chef Todd English is facing DWI charges after a traffic stop on Sunday.

Movies

Box office: 'Guardians of the Galaxy' is 2014's…

This weekend "The Guardians of the Galaxy" passed the fourth "Transformers" movie to become the highest grossing film of 2014.

Gossip

Spears back with controversial ex?

Is Briteny Spears back with Adnan Ghalib?

Sports

Novak Djokovic feeds off US Open crowd to…

Novak Djokovic isn't a native New Yorker, but he sure knows how to use the U.S. Open crowd to his advantage.

NFL

Odell Beckham still 'weeks away,' Tom Coughlin angry…

Giants head coach Tom Coughlin has fought a losing battle against the media all preseason over the status of wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr.

NFL

3 things we learned in the Giants preseason…

The final score didn’t matter — a 16-13 win by the Giants — but it would’ve been nice to finally see Big Blue’s new-look offense get on track.

NFL

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots, 49ers start…

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots start at top

Education

These college students think breakfast is the most…

  It should be no surprise that the city that never sleeps is also home to the most students who like to order food in…

Sex

When it comes to dating, height matters

Does a man’s height really matter when it comes to dating? Unfortunately - according to a new study - the answer looks like it’s yes.…

Travel

10 free apps to make traveling easier

Finding the nearest bathroom, calculating currency exchanges and locating your departure gate must have been difficult for travelers of previous generations. But we wouldn't know,…

Travel

How to get a seat upgrade to business…

It used to be much easier to upgrade your coach seat to business or even first class, but rigid rules and tighter schedules have made…